The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Banned dubliner's Avatar
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    Overtraining: One of Bodybuilding's Greatest Myths?

    you read Flex or any other bodybuilding magazine you might get the idea that over training is one of the greatest dangers of the sport, and a huge obstacle to growth. Am I the only one who considers this one of the greatest frauds in the sport today? Certainly for a beginning to intermediate bodybuilder such advice might be the kiss of death to any realistic chance to be huge and cut.

    Studies show that full muscle recovery in athletes occurs after 48 to 72 hours. For a steroid taking athlete certainly recovery times are towards the quick end of this spectrum. Yet somehow in the past decade and a half most people have been fed the idea that training a muscle group once a week is optimal- a full 168 hours of rest between using a muscle. It seems to me that more waiting does NOT mean more recovery. Full recovery is full recovery. Your muscles grow as they recover, not after they recover.

    Arnold trained each muscle group three times a week with 48 hours rest. Ronnie Coleman trains each muscle group twice a week, so 72 to 96 hours rest. But a 168 hours rest, where the heck did that come from?

    It came from a combination of the rise of Dorian Yates, who claimed to train each muscle just once a week, and more importantly, the wishes of a culture of laziness that constantly whispers in your ear "Slow down, take it easy. All that effort's not necessary". We live in times of obesity, of excuses such as "I'd love to train, but I've got a bum knee, so I can't work out ". It's a fat world, and it wants you to join them, so "slow down and don't over train". Training six times a week of course in our present cultural climate means that you are a "fanatic" and "over-training". You'll grow better just sitting on the couch, right?

    It's unfortunate that many bbers accept the idea that over-training is some kind common pitfall. Which is more common, overtrained athletes or the kind of shapeless blobs who wander around your gym with Wieder belts straining to hold back their guts? Many of these guys happily latched on to the once-a-week-to-avoid-overtraining marlarkey because it fit into their general slothfulness. Yes, he's fat and ugly but he thinks he's Dorian Yates because he's training each muscle once a week.

    Yes, frequent training hurts. Yes, it hurts more than training a muscle group just once a week. But pain is tolerable and necessary for growth. My personal experience is that particularly when on a cycle, solid muscle growth is much more common on 72 to 96 hours rest.

    Bodybuilding is not about moderation, it's about excess. Want moderation? Learn golf. Read up on Arnold's training regimen for confirmation that excess and intensity are two words for the same thing.
    Last edited by dubliner; 09-25-2003 at 09:30 AM.

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  3. #2
    Pretty Fly for an Old Guy W8_4_Me's Avatar
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    Bravo.

    While I believe that overtraining exists with top athletes, I don't believe the recreational r novice lifter has ANYTHING to worry about. It's just an excuse to be a slacker.

    Great post!
    "A winner...knows how much he still has to learn, even when he is considered an expert by others; A loser...wants to be considered an expert by others, before he has even learned enough to know how little he knows." - Sydney Harris


    "It takes a big man to cry, and an even BIGGER man to laugh at that man!" - Jack Handey


    "It's simple. If it jiggles, it's fat." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

  4. #3
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    Did you write this or is it copied from somehwere? It's just your journal says you have only been training for three months and I doubt the weights you are lifting are that heavy yet so you need less recovery.

    All the people you quoted are pro's their job is to train, they eat when they want, sleep when they want train whenever they feel ready - they don't have full time jobs and the same commitments normal folk do, couple that with large amounts of steroids and you have far better conditions for training that anyone else.

    Overtraining is very real, if you've only trained for three months your in the honeymoon stage as a beginner undergoing neural adaption to training. When the weights get heavier there is more strain on tendonds, ligaments, the CNS etc.

    Most people who have a few years training behind them will have experienced the signs of overtraining, if it was optimal to train six days per week we would all do it, pre-steroid bodybuilders didn't train that way so there's nothing to suggest its optimal. I know what its like to overtrain, I've seen the signs enough time - If training 6 days per week was the key to results I would do that, I've trained 5 days per week and it lead to joint pains and lack of motivation.

    I do train each muslce more than once per week but would never consider doing 6 days per week, some of us have lives and commitements outside the gym. I think its something you will learn over time that newbie enthusiasm to be in the gym constantly wears down after a while.

    I agree that some people are too scared to overtrain and need to find out for themselves what their body can handle but to say overtraining doesn't exist is simply not true.
    Last edited by D&G; 09-25-2003 at 09:40 AM.

  5. #4
    y0 aidano's Avatar
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    Interesting piece, but you should credit your sources mate - that will put the piece in a context and we'll know if you're posting your actual opinion or not.

    I think someone who thinks overtraining is a myth has spent too much time on elitefitness or some other steroid saturated world.
    Last edited by aidano; 09-25-2003 at 10:00 AM.

    People wonder why I call myself Mr. T. One dude asked, 'does the T stand for tough?' I said no. Another dude asked if the T stands for my last name, Tureaud. No it does not. The 'T' in Mr. T stands for tuna. T loves tuna.

  6. #5
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    false

    overtraining is not a myth. everyone has different recovery times. mine is 6-7 days. when i started i trained like the old skool, arnold and the mon, wed, fri bit. i never truley started to grow until i gave at least 5 days rest.
    when you talk about research, your talking about average joe's. researchers ussaully use college kids who are taking the class or need money. they are not high intensity bodybuilders or powerlifters. i know it takes me and my friends at least 3-4 days just for the DOMS (delayed onset muscular sorness) to go away. If you train when your muscles still hurt, your doing more damage than good. ever heard someone make the excuse that they cant lift as much today cuase their tri's or chest is still sore? exactly.

    and on the ronnie thing. he did not always do that. plus the dude has been training for like 20 years. there is pleanty of room for error there. and of course he is probably on **** that isnt even sold yet. orian dwarfs him. dont get me wrong arnold was a great spark to bbing.

    im just thankful for the dude who got my head out of my butt and got me to train less often.

  7. #6
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    I train everything twice a week and I love it.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

    Budiak: That girl I maced
    Budiak: macked
    Budiak: heh maced
    Budiak: I wish

    ShmrckPmp5: a good thing people can't fire guns through the computer...your ass would have been shot years ago

    Y2A 47: youre smooth as hell
    Y2A 47: thats why you get outta tickets, and into panties

    galileo: you're a fucking beast and I hate you
    galileo: hate

    assgrabbers are never subtile, they will grabb ass whereever they go,public or not, I know the type, because I am one. - Rock

  8. #7
    Wounded Deadlifter ryan1117's Avatar
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    If overtraining was a myth, I wouldn't have screwed myself over for all those years. About a year ago, I cut down my volume significantly. Guess what happened? My strength shot through the roof from where it was.
    5-9 170

  9. #8
    Steak and Eggs pusher's Avatar
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    :withstupi


    If you lift with strict form and with sufficient weight, you will need sufficient rest to grow. People who train with sub-optimal weights/intensity need not apply. I agree with W_8 in that the rec/novice lifter who isn't serious about the bodybuilding lifestyle has nothing to worry about. If for them rest is an excuse for slacking, then certainly they have other obstacles in their way to straighten out first.
    "The highest reward for man's toil is not what he gets for it, but what he becomes by it." -John Ruskin 1819-1900

    "He who fights monsters should see to it that in the process, he does not
    become a monster. And when you look into the abyss, the abyss also looks into
    you." - Nietzche

  10. #9
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Myth, no.

    Hyperbole, yes.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

    Budiak: That girl I maced
    Budiak: macked
    Budiak: heh maced
    Budiak: I wish

    ShmrckPmp5: a good thing people can't fire guns through the computer...your ass would have been shot years ago

    Y2A 47: youre smooth as hell
    Y2A 47: thats why you get outta tickets, and into panties

    galileo: you're a fucking beast and I hate you
    galileo: hate

    assgrabbers are never subtile, they will grabb ass whereever they go,public or not, I know the type, because I am one. - Rock

  11. #10
    Gen_chat worst nightmare
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    Whoever wrote that didn't get to say much worth reading.

    Do this:

    Train seven days a week for 2.30 hours each day.

    Do some cardio, if you wish but it's not necessary in order to achieve the goal in question (overtraning).

    Take each and every set to complete concentric failure.

    When your hearth rate starts getting all messed up, your sex drive disapears, you become completely unable to sleep, you can't stand any bright lights (including sunlight), you feel dizzy and lightheaded every time you get up, you suffer from chronic infections, you lose strength (maybe in specific exercises, maybe on all), you get extremely tired and irritable all the time then search no more. Say hello to true overtraining, a possible life long companion since there's no real cure for it. You'll need a few months off and some extra care for the rest of your life because the relapse always comes a lot easier than the original episode.

    This is the recipe I found to achieve my overtraining sindrome.

    It has VERY LITTLE, if anything to do with muscle recovery. It's a nervous, endocrine and immune systems disorder. While you people don't get to understand this every single thread about overtraining will be one more wild gooze chase.
    Last edited by restless; 09-25-2003 at 10:58 AM.

  12. #11
    Senior Member hemants's Avatar
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    Overtraining is not a myth.

    It's just that most novices probably worry to much about it because most don't have the discipline to overtrain in the first place.

    You have to listen to your body. And I find that I CAN workout my upper body once every 4 days but not indefinately.
    Last edited by hemants; 09-25-2003 at 10:57 AM.
    If the only thing you are holding is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

  13. #12
    Pretty Fly for an Old Guy W8_4_Me's Avatar
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    "Hyperbole".

    Good word!

    I had to go look that one up!

    hy∑per∑bo∑le
    Pronunciation: hI-'p&r-b&-(")lE
    Function: noun
    Etymology: Latin, from Greek hyperbolE excess, hyperbole, hyperbola, from hyperballein to exceed, from hyper- + ballein to throw -- more at DEVIL
    Date: 15th century
    : extravagant exaggeration (as "mile-high ice-cream cones")
    - hy∑per∑bo∑list /-list/ noun
    "A winner...knows how much he still has to learn, even when he is considered an expert by others; A loser...wants to be considered an expert by others, before he has even learned enough to know how little he knows." - Sydney Harris


    "It takes a big man to cry, and an even BIGGER man to laugh at that man!" - Jack Handey


    "It's simple. If it jiggles, it's fat." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

  14. #13
    hi
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    off track

    man some of you dudes are way off track.
    training 2 1/2 hrs a day!
    what the hell.
    45-1.5 tops
    intensity is the key not volume.
    and every set to failure? you must be one of those dudes who needs a spot to get the first rep up.
    if your beast like coleman, then you can say no overtraining.
    but the 2-3 time a week people probably havent gained a lb in years

  15. #14
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    Re: off track

    Originally posted by JMD1648
    man some of you dudes are way off track.
    training 2 1/2 hrs a day!
    what the hell.
    45-1.5 tops
    intensity is the key not volume.
    and every set to failure? you must be one of those dudes who needs a spot to get the first rep up.
    if your beast like coleman, then you can say no overtraining.
    but the 2-3 time a week people probably havent gained a lb in years

    He was being ironic

    Anyway by the logic of the first day training 7 days per week, for at least 3 sessions a day should be the way to go, wouldn't want to be lazy or undedicated would we.

  16. #15
    Gen_chat worst nightmare
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    Re: Re: off track

    Originally posted by D&G



    He was being ironic

    Anyway by the logic of the first day training 7 days per week, for at least 3 sessions a day should be the way to go, wouldn't want to be lazy or undedicated would we.
    :withstupi

    Instead of asking if overtraining is a myth, maybe the question should be: "Do I have even the slightest clue on what overtraining is?"

  17. #16
    Wannabebig New Member HahnB's Avatar
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    Re: off track

    Originally posted by JMD1648

    but the 2-3 time a week people probably havent gained a lb in years
    lol
    My brother and I were brutal. I once chased him around the house with a spoon that I put on the burner. I burned that little pricks leg. -sharkall2003

    Then I saw a little african boy sleeping, and I thought...that is little Okeke. he is tired from herding all the goats and the big goat got away today - Rock

  18. #17
    y0 aidano's Avatar
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    I thought it was lack of gains due to weightlifting too much. Seems like I was wrong?

    People wonder why I call myself Mr. T. One dude asked, 'does the T stand for tough?' I said no. Another dude asked if the T stands for my last name, Tureaud. No it does not. The 'T' in Mr. T stands for tuna. T loves tuna.

  19. #18
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Re: off track

    Originally posted by JMD1648
    but the 2-3 time a week people probably havent gained a lb in years
    You're right, it wasn't a pound. It was thirty, last January/February. Its in my journal if you'd like a look.

    And slowly (due to a much better diet) creeping back up right now.
    Last edited by PowerManDL; 09-25-2003 at 02:01 PM.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

    Budiak: That girl I maced
    Budiak: macked
    Budiak: heh maced
    Budiak: I wish

    ShmrckPmp5: a good thing people can't fire guns through the computer...your ass would have been shot years ago

    Y2A 47: youre smooth as hell
    Y2A 47: thats why you get outta tickets, and into panties

    galileo: you're a fucking beast and I hate you
    galileo: hate

    assgrabbers are never subtile, they will grabb ass whereever they go,public or not, I know the type, because I am one. - Rock

  20. #19
    Senior Member
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    I'm training each muscle twice per week now, gained about 6lbs in the three weeks since I started and feeling good.

    Nothing wrong with training a muscle more than once a week just a case of getting the right balance.

  21. #20
    Gen_chat worst nightmare
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    Originally posted by aidano
    I thought it was lack of gains due to weightlifting too much. Seems like I was wrong?
    Well, yes. Overtraining sindrome goes way beyond that. Lack of gains are a early overtraining symptom but lack of progress by no mean implies that you're truly overtrained.

    Read this:

    The best review on overtraining I've ever seen

  22. #21
    Wannabebig New Member
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    I've been lifting on and off, mostly unsuccessfully, for almost eight years. If you want advice from a guy who knows how to get big, you'd better talk to somebody else.

    But I do know what doesn't work for me. Doesn't mean it won't work for you, just that I tried it and got nowhere. My sophomore year of college, I spent four months lifting weights for an hour a half a day, three to five days a week. Usually it was four days a week. I concentrated mostly on compound movements and went to failure on at least one set per exercise.

    My bench went up a whopping 10 pounds in the entire time period, to a dazzling 135. I was cranky, my GPA dropped, I slept 10 and 12 hours some nights and woke up exhausted, and I had a permanent cold.

    On the other hand, by the end of the third month a typical meal was a cheesesteak, gravy fries, a hot dog, and two slices of cake - and I never gained a pound.

    What little muscle and strength I have gained, I gained on programs that required three hours of hard work per week or less.

  23. #22
    Gonnabebig Member JuniorMint6669's Avatar
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    I also train each body part two per week, and have made nice gains. You can also see my journal for my progress.

  24. #23
    Thugly bullethead's Avatar
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    Where does HST figure in to this equation, I suppose since your not going to failure, and still only doing 3 hours a week, and not only using maximal weights once every couple weeks there's no danger of overtraining.
    Crazy looking intimidatiing meathead with no neck - MadFistBT

  25. #24
    Senior Member Wikked1's Avatar
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    NOT this again? What is so hard to accept about the idea that everyone is different and that over training for me might be a warmup for someone else? If you're progressing in your routines are you over training? Is it possible to over train specific body parts by attacking them with volume routines? How about the theory of lagging body parts? Does anyone recommend more REST for lagging body parts? What works for me on my chest routine might not for you and if I try to apply it to my legs or back it might overtrain them is THAT a possiblity? You bet your butt it is....the bottom line should be that we don't all jump on the band wagon when we read someone's split and scream "over training"...we should ask does it work for you? Just because it doesn't for 99% of the population doesn't mean it won't for some individual somewhere. Overtraining does occur but usually I would say it's more likely undernutrition that kills growth....just a theory but many people CLAIM to eat 4000 calories a day how many of them KNOW they do? If they aren't couting calories chances are they AREN'T! (oooopssss I'll get off my soap box now)

  26. #25
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Muscular recovery is but one aspect of systemic recovery.

    Your muscles may be recovered in 72 hours, but your CNS may not -- for example.

    It depends on a host of factors - although I think there are some very good rules of thumb when it comes to training that work out well for everyone.

    I, too, train everything twice a week. I train 4 days a week, and rarely more than 20 worksets a day. That's 80 worksets a week. Very, very few of those worksets are to failure.

    I used to train everything once a week. Again, 4 days a week, no more than 20 sets a day, and trained to failure more often. The additional volume and traiing to failure meant I needed to lay off a bit longer before training that bodypart again.

    Remember, too, that your body will adapt. So while training full body 3 days a week may sound like too much, assuming your set count is reasonable, you'll adapt.

    Further, each individual will vary, with some at the very low end of the toerance spectrum, and some at the very high end.

    Some people can only train twice a week, some can train 6 days a week.

    But - for most people, something in the neighborhood of 80 worksets per week is going to be about right. Powerman might be right at 73. W8 might be right at 91.

    And I'm ignoring all the other stuff that might play into it, like % of RM, rest, diet, drugs, etc.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
    "You're wrong, and I have a completely irrelevant pubmed abstract that may or may not say so." - Belial
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